Tulsa Police ID Gunman In Tuesday's Fatal Shooting

Wednesday, June 1st 2011, 10:44 am
By: News On 6


TULSA, Oklahoma -- Tulsa Police have released more information about Tuesday's carjackings and killing at 21st Street and Yale, including the identity of the gunman. Tulsa Police say the shooter was Billy Joe Hamons, 31. 

Police say the incident began when Hamons and another man committed a home invasion in the Osage County community of Prue at about 10 a.m. on May 31, 2011.

The victims were approached by two white males dressed as linesmen. The two suspects produced firearms and ordered the two victims into the residence.

6/1/2011 Related Story: Gunman In Tuesday's Fatal Shooting Had Lengthy Criminal Record

The two robbers tied up both victims then loaded a large number of firearms into a victim's white 1999 GMC Safari van bearing Oklahoma tag 612-FLT.  Police say Hamons forced one of the victims from the home invasion into the van and drove to Tulsa.

The second victim from the home invasion was able to free himself and called police, notifying them of the crime and that the suspect and kidnapping victim were heading to 2246 South Oswego in Tulsa.

Tulsa police officers were dispatched to an "en route to a harm" call at the home.

"One of the victims in Prue lived at the house on Oswego," Jason Willingham, with Tulsa Police, said. "So we don't know why they decided to go back to the house, don't know if they had prior knowledge, they told the victims they had been watching them, but we believe they left the Prue location to come to the Tulsa location to continue the robbery."

At approximately 12:30 p.m., Officer D. Cole arrived at the Oswego home and saw Hamons and the kidnapping victim exiting the residence.

Upon seeing the officer, Hamons fired at Officer Cole, striking his vehicle.  Hamons then forced the kidnapping victim back into the truck and led officers on a pursuit that stopped at the Neighborhood Wal-Mart located at 2100 South Yale.

Hamons ran into the Walmart where he fired additional shots, then ran towards the Panda Express across the street.  Police say Hamons ran through the Panda Express carrying a gun, then attempted to carjack a couple who were driving west on 21st Street.

Hamons fired a shot into the vehicle killing the driver, Sufeng He, a 24-year-old TU student from China working on a master's degree in electrical engineering.

He then carjacked a pickup truck occupied by four people. Hamons drove south on Yale while firing shots at the pursuing officers, who fired at him.

The truck hit a utility pole at 22nd Place and South Yale and came to a stop.  After a lengthy standoff, police officers approached the vehicle and found the suspect dead.

Tulsa Police say it's not clear whether Hamons was killed by officers or a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Police believe Billy Joe Hamons was involved in several armed robberies in and around Tulsa including crimes where the suspects identified themselves as Tulsa police officers, according to Tulsa Police Officer Jason Willingham.

Hamons was also known to target victims who have guns, Willingham said.

5/4/2011 Related Story: Gunmen Posing As Police Officers Rob Three Tulsa Residents

Tulsa Police recovered the van connected to the home invasion.  They also recovered more than 60 high powered guns and 30 rounds of ammunition connected to the incident at a Tulsa home Wednesday afternoon.

6/1/2011 Related Story: Tulsa Police Recover Van, Guns Connected To Tuesday's Deadly Shooting

Tulsa Police say seven officers have been placed on routine administrative leave pending the outcome of an internal investigation.

Related Stories:
5/31/2011 TU Student, Gunman Dead After Tulsa Chase And Carjackings
5/31/2011 Tulsa Carjacking Victim To Gunman: 'Let Me Get My Baby'
5/31/2011 Customers Rattled When Gunman Opens Fire Inside Tulsa Walmart